Staunchly, vol. 42: Harriet Potter and the Sh*tty Sexist Horcrux

(Originally posted: 1/12/18)

Hello pals,
If you read the last Staunchly (I also posted it here), you know last year was a particularly tricky one for me. (As it was for so many of us). I expected 2017 to end in some kind of apt, dramatically awful fashion, but it just sort of melted away. I took a walk on a beach. I drank some champagne. And then it was 2018.  
As far as resolutions go, I just have two big ones that require my full devotion.
1. Write.
2. Take care of myself.
Keeping it simple and vague for max wiggle room. I think that is the key to resolutions, no?
Of course, I also have some smaller, more measurable goals in mind for 2018….
…Finish more books. Make more money (or, more elegantly: respect the work I do enough to demand compensation). Quit biting my nails (I haven’t bothered with a manicure since Trump was elected). Cook. Explore. Take my medicine. Stop glorifying my ennui. Be less late.
I realized recently that I was never late when I had a more regimented sense of where I needed to be, which, gosh—let’s not unpack that now. 
I also want to keep my eyes open for the good stuff even when I’m feeling gray. For all its poison, I will try to remember 2017 as the year I saw the Grand Canyon.
Hope you all had a lovely week.

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If you haven’t seen it yet, please enjoy this video of figure skater Jimmy Ma performing to “Turn Down for What” at the US National Championships. He may have finished in 11th place, but this routine is gold. 

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Montecito looks like a war zone right now. That is a sentence I never thought I'd type. I'm still wrapping my head around all the devastation that has struck this magical, sleepy town, a place I grew up visiting often because my best friend called it home. 

A national hero made the pizza dough cinnamon rolls from Mario Batali’s sexual misconduct apology email and the result is my favorite thing I’ve read on the internet in a long while.  

I hate them, but I keep eating them. Like I’m somehow destroying Batali’s shitty sexist horcrux in every bite.

Moira Donegan, the creator of the Shitty Media Men, speaks. And it is incredibly powerful.
Despite what my friend calls “solidarity fashion,” the female body was still distinctly on display at the Golden Globes.
The Secret to Understanding Kamala Harris.
I was very sad to learn this week how completely full of sh*t French cinema icon Catherine Deneuveis. What a shame that she has “interiorized misogyny” and the patriarchal demands on female autonomy and sexuality to such a deep, irreversible extent that she cannot see the forest for the trees (the objectification for the “clumsy flirting”).
Lauren Collins’ response to the Deneuve letter in the New Yorker is really great. These are my fave lines. 

Consensual sex is no more akin to being rubbed up against in the subway than drinking wine is to being roofied. A woman can fight for equal pay and not like assault, or tuna-fish sandwiches.


Bothering women in an unwanted way isn’t an expression of artistic temperament, without which the world would lose its magic.

Michelle Williams received less than 1% of what Mark Wahlberg, Boston’s finest purveyor of eponymous burgers and hate crimes, did for the All the Money in the World reshoots.
Serena Williams is magic.
Speculation over Trump’s mental health makes me queasy, though I am certainly guilty of doing it myself. This article was a good reminder that discussion of his “cognitive decline” drips ableism. There are fourteen million things that make this man unfit to be president. We don’t need a diagnosis. We have eyes.

I don't believe Trump's mental condition is all that relevant to his miserable performance as president. I believe he's always been a liar, a merchant of racism and sexism, and a person willing to exploit any perceived weakness for the sake of personal gain. The urge to pathologize his conduct says much more about the ableist biases of American society than whatever is going on in the president's brain.

My most indelible memories of James Franco will always be him loitering outside freshman dorms at NYU. Everyone knew he liked freshman. In my experience, that is not the mark of a totally upstanding guy. Still, I was shocked and disgusted by the allegations in this exposé on his sexual misconduct.
How Charles Manson co-opted ’60s fashion to sell sex and sadism.
Weird-ass old school beauty hacks. Though it does make me wonder what will my descendants will think of my sheet mask and snail goo habits…


Staunchly yours,